7 Ways to Be Productive at Work
Whether an employee or employer, for an idea to become a reality, or for a business to prosper, there is a level of work that needs to be fueled into that idea or business to nurture it into becoming something bigger. There are times we feel lazy to work. It is normal. But a continuous lazy attitude towards work will only produce lazy jaw-dropping results that would harm us financially. Even emotionally. I am sure we don’t want all the struggles that come with that. You would rather prefer the struggles that come with Conscious Productivity which could convert to Habitual Productivity in the long run.
It is no doubt that the Internet has made a whole lot of things easier from planning online work meetings to having a to-do-list on your phone which reminds you at specific times the actions that need to be treated regarding the execution of the day’s projects or tasks. At the end of each workday, plan the following day’s work. Better still, over the weekend, prepare a one-week to-do-list which can be done on apps like the To-Do List app that comes with some phones or applications like the google calendar.
There are other ways to create a to-do list such as saving it as an alarm that reminds you at specific times the actions to be taken or writing down each day or each week’s plan or goal on a jotter. Any method employed Is dependent on which style suits you as long as it keeps you active and produces a result(s).
“Plan your work for today and every day, then work your plan”
Being punctual shows a level of professionalism and fills people with the impression that you are competent. We all know the importance of attending to things on time even to the minute issues as these issues could result in bigger ones only if we had given it prompt attention. Being punctual at work saves us on a lot of problems that could have occurred if we were 1 minute late.
Being punctual helps in the early execution of projects. When you are punctual, you are not just making your work done on time, you are also speeding up things on the part of your teammates. Imagine you are the manager of a company, with you being the only one person aside from the CEO that can give final approval before funds can be taken out of the company’s account. Now, there is a project at hand that requires funds. Your teammates are set to work. Every other resource except funds is ready. And it is not a case of unavailability of funds, but a case of the manager, not being available to approve the withdrawal of funds due to punctuality matters. The manager has not just slowed down the events of the day but has created a turnover of workload that could have been completed in a day or few days, adding to the workload of the following day, thereby putting pressure on the team. The manager could also be a source of discouragement to the team who have been quick to produce results only to be dragged back by the manager who is supposed to incite the spirit of punctuality.
This could also happen among teammates where one’s job is dependent on the completion of the other teammate’s job. Punctuality is a beautiful soft skill that should be imbibed.
“Better three hours too soon than a minute too late”
~ William Shakespeare
Learning to prioritize helps you work smart and shows that you know what you are doing. It also helps avoid having unorganized work, taking away pressures from the inability to complete a task, and making you work smoothly and at your pace. Arrange your task in an order of urgency, completing each task according to how important they are in the order of the day. You could also organize your work in your to-do list for instance with the titles; Primary tasks and Secondary tasks.
Prioritizing also involves learning to avoid distractions. It helps to keep you focused on the day’s job. There will always be something to distract you such as a colleague who probably is done with her/his work for the day looking for someone to cool off with or it could be a buzz from the phone. Distractions could either slow down progress or result in a wasted effort. Avoid getting distracted with things that have nothing to do with your goals.
“By prevailing over all obstacles and distractions, one may unfailingly arrive at his chooses goal or destination”
~ Christopher Columbus
You have most likely heard of the saying that no man is an island. No one person knows it all. You will always find people, specialized in a particular field that knows better than you do the same way you know better than them in areas you are also specialized in. Asking questions doesn’t make you a fool. It doesn’t mean you don’t know what you are doing. Asking questions shows you are not ignorant enough to stay out of the loop.
Asking questions helps you tackle challenges in a better way and saves you the pain of making mistakes. Mistakes are avoided when we ask questions from people who have towed that part. When challenged with how to go about a particular project, try asking questions from colleagues or external workers. They could help save you a whole lot of stress and time, helping you focus on the important parts of the day’s work.
“He who asks a question remains a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask remains a fool forever”
~ Chinese proverbs
Being a team player is one of the top sought-after soft skills during recruitment. This is because teamwork aids speedy delivery and productivity. Imagine one person doing all of the work – a job that should be designated to five people. The person would not just be extremely slow in delivery, s/he would at the end of the day break down or lose interest. Teamwork ensures the timely and quality delivery of service. It also conveys professionalism.
Working as a team creates a smooth workflow among colleagues and makes each colleague accountable to the other. It also gives room for positive energy, helping each teammate focus on areas they are good in, letting each team member feel valued because they know they are actively adding to something that yields a positive result. This automatically leads to producing quality.
“Coming together is a beginning,
staying together is progress,
and working together is success”
~ Henry Ford
Take a Break
To improve productivity at work, take a short break. A short break relaxes the brain and muscles. It gives room for fresh new ideas and better ways of achieving results through creativity. Taking short pauses could help serve as an eyeopener to little errors in your task. Although, it is advisable to spend your breaks outside work. You would find out that returning to work after a short break will help you focus more. In between work, try to take at least 5 minutes break. Your short break could include buzzing a friend, chit-chat with a colleague, listening to songs, watching funny YouTube videos, etc.
“Sometimes when we take a break, we may find that solutions then present themselves”
One more thing, finish up. By now you are probably back from your short break, with over half the day’s job completed. At this stage, you are refreshed, be ready to find areas in your project to correct. Go through all done tasks, follow up on those that need a follow-up, ask for feedback. Clean up, clean up and clean up.
Kindly leave your comments, suggestions, or questions in the comment section below.